A meeting held last night in Byron Bay, the day that the Ballina bypass opened, heard that it will cost $9–$15 million to bypass Byron Bay.
While this may seem a lot of money it is a drop in the ocean compared to the $640 million for the Ballina bypass. But unlike the new Pacific Highway, it is unlikely to be high on the government’s agenda.
The meeting was told that there are two options for bypassing the town: one would connect the Arts and Industry Estate with Suffolk Park; the other would be a mini-bypass, avoiding just the Byron CBD.
The prices quoted did not include land acquisition.
At the launch of the Ballina bypass yesterday, federal infrastructure and transport minister Anthony Albanese said the Howard government was to blame for cost blowouts for Ballina bypass. He said his predecessor talked about a bypass but never did anything about it.